Tag: gifts for teens + tweens

Bitsbox: The fantastic STEM gift idea that taught my 4 kids to code their own apps.

It’s no secret that parents love finding tech gifts for kids that we can justify as being both fun and educational, but the true test isn’t whether we think they’re cool — but rather, whether our own kids play with them. Over and over again. That’s why we we’re so thrilled to have partnered with our newest sponsor Bitsbox. (And you dedicated Spawned podcast listeners already know just how thrilled!) This clever subscription box gift masterfully and clearly teaches kids how to code their own apps that actually work on smartphones and tablets. Like my 9-year-old son’s Burping Obama app. (Not coming to an app store near you,...

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This new book for girls has us shouting, WOW!

WOWsdom! The Girl’s Guide to the Positive and the Possible is a new interactive book I found recently on Kickstarter that has one very important mission: to help raise our female leaders of tomorrow. And they’ve set out to do just that by sharing the intimate and life-changing experiences of other women and girls so that those who may not have a mentor in their lives can still find ways to connect, learn, and grow into smart, empowered women. Truly wow-worthy, in my opinion. Related: Epic tees for epic teens and tweens, designed by epic teens and tweens. Epic. WOWsdom! is the work of Generation WOW, an organization...

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The best Small Business Saturday deals: 75+ ways to save big while you shop small.

We love supporting our favorite small businesses every day of course, but to encourage you to make the most of Small Business Saturday, so many of them have offered up the best shopping deals and discounts today. We’ve rounded up more than 75 of them for you right here and we’ll even keep updating the post as more roll in — and be sure to follow us on Twitter where we’ll be tweeting them all day. What’s more, be sure to shop our 2016 Holiday Gift Guide for even more gift ideas from indie designers and small businesses, lots of which include their own discount codes too....

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Epic tees for epic teens and tweens, designed by epic teens and tweens. Epic.

One of the hardest things about buying clothes for my tween is that she wants to look grown-up, but the clothes made for teens are too often high on price and low on, uh, coverage. And the message isn’t always one I want to promote, like those “Math is hard” shirts that keep popping up like a negative self-esteem whack-a-mole game. Luckily, we’ve found a great company in California with clothes and accessories we think are perfect for our tweens and teens — because they’re designed and curated by actual tween and teen girls. Related: We’re fawning over these 9 adorable...

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Art With Edge coloring books for tweens and teens makes coloring in the lines cool again.

Move over grown ups, there’s a new coloring demographic in town. And, we’re not talking about kiddie books filled with hearts and teddy bears. Art With Edge — Crayola’s latest line of seven cool coloring books and two coloring kits — are filled with zombies, sugar skulls, graffiti, bold and fearless sayings, and quirky cartoons just begging to be filled in with color by the tweens and teens in your life. (They also have two superhero books, Justice League and Batman, which may be a great option for some kids, but to me, they didn’t seem to fit in with Crayola’s new and edgy line for our bigger kids.) My girls, ages 12...

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Give the gift of reading all in one cool gift box, from the new Brightly Gifts | Sponsored Message

This is a sponsored message from Brightly Gifts Whether you’re shopping for a special gift for your own child, grandchild, niece, nephew or best friend’s cool kid, books are at the top of so many wish lists. Which is why you’ll want to check out Brightly Gifts, a brand new shop filled with thoughtfully curated, high quality gift boxes of books to suit babies and early readers. Special offer for Cool Mom Picks readers: Save 20% off your order + get free ground shipping at Brightly Gifts with code CMPGIFTS2016. From the creators of Brightly, a popular site trusted by thousands...

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Everyday Bravery Pins by Emily McDowell: Because sometimes just getting out of bed deserves a medal

There’s a reason why we love artist Emily McDowell so much. She has this way of taking exactly what we’re thinking and turning it into sometimes hilarious, sometimes touching quotes that turn into wonderful gifts and greeting cards. And her new Everyday Bravery Pins that just launched today are no exception. In fact, I got a little teary (in a good way) reading through each of them.   Related: Make your mornings a whole lot brighter with these 5 funny mugs These enamel pins capture the little and big moments we overcome every single day that rarely, if ever, get recognized. From...

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Just Like Me: A book subscription box created for children of color who want to see themselves in the books they read, too.

I did the research, and in 2013, out of 3,200 children’s books published, only 93 featured African American characters. Sadly, that’s even more than I had expected. And the numbers aren’t much better for other races and ethnicities. Thankfully, campaigns like #WeNeedDiverseBooks and #1000blackgirlbooks have brought some awareness and change to the publishing industry, which I’m definitely cheering — I know that moms of all kinds would love to fill their kids’ bookshelves with more diverse stories about more diverse characters. But as the mother of two biracial girls, this is really personal for me. That’s why I’m thrilled to find the new Just Like Me! Book Box, a monthly...

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Crafting with Feminism: Smashing the patriarchy with a hot glue gun.

My daughter is 10 and already bemoaning her leg hair and asking why the boy who used to be her friend now teases her mercilessly. No wonder she gravitated toward a fabulous new book the moment it landed in our mailbox. Crafting with Feminism by noted geek and author Bonnie Burton (whom you might know from Felicia Day’s Vaginal Fantasy Book Club? No? Okay, anyway she’s awesome…) has put together 25 cool, easy, and fun crafts centered on taking pride in feminism. So far, my daughter is determined to make matching NOPE necklaces (for herself and me), Monster Week Maxipad Cases, and Food...

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Handmade Charlotte Kids: Fun activity kits and art supplies at crazy affordable prices

With the cooler weather around the corner, we’ve got one terrific way to get ready for lots of indoor play: The fun new craft kits and art supplies from our most excellent sponsor, Handmade Charlotte Kids, now available at Michael’s stores nationwide, and online. We absolutely adore this collaboration between Creativity for Kids and Rachel Faucett, she of the uber popular DIY design blog Handmade Charlotte. Especially since we’ve featured her work on Cool Mom Picks for so many years — like, even going back to before she had a blog and was selling cool handmade items at craft fairs! So now we’re so thrilled for this terrific collection of fun, colorful, creativity-inspiring craft...

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The best non-toxic nail polish brands for kids, in colors we can wear too.

Even though I’m a first-time mom-to-be, I feel like I’m already an expert on the best non-toxic nail polishes for kids. I adore painting my nieces’ nails; it’s such a fun bonding activity, and they love it too, especially when we can wear the same color and be “twins.” But because two of them are still under the age of 4, I know the polish that goes on their nails can end up, well, anywhere and everywhere, and so I always look for non-toxic nail polish, but I still want it to go on smoothly and scent-free, and ideally, peel right off....

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16 terrifically creepy YA novels for kids (and adults!) who dig dark themes. Boo!

As we turn the corner into All Things Pumpkin Spice, let us not forget that being up all night with a scary book can be truly delicious. These YA reads for teens (and adults!) who dig dark themes range from silly vampires to magical devils to absolute terror — and they all happen to be written by women. Several of them carry my personal Seal of Scareproval, and the rest were recommended by other YA authors and editors I trust, being a fantasy author myself, so you know we know our stuff. Hope one of these 16 novels is just...

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We’re fawning over these 9 adorable woodland creature bags for tweens.

Guiding a tween through fashion choices can get pretty squirrely. They want to seem grown up, but they also adore cuteness. It’s a bear of a problem for even the most chipper of moms. That’s why we’ve rounded up a staggering selection of adorable woodland creature bags for tweens that we found on Etsy — all of which straddle the line between Little Kid and No, You Can’t Wear Lipstick Yet. A little bird told me your kid’ll love them. Heh. At top: Deer Clutch | GableMade Related: Cool backpack and lunchbox sets that are perfect for tweens and teens....

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Let’s talk puberty: 3 books for girls that help you have the talk

I love having a daughter. Her bright, energetic, and (yes) sometimes emotional personality is such a treat to have in our home. We’ve had a very open relationship so far, which I am very grateful for, and now she’s creeping up on the age where we’re going to start talking about how her body is changing. Let’s face it, she’ll be a (gulp) teenager soon. Even though I know she’s comfortable asking me pretty much anything, there’s only so much my words can communicate to her. She’s going to need pictures, and for that I’m turning to some of...

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The hottest new designer for kids is… your kid. Eat your heart out, Stella McCartney!

Whether your little artist is more of a Versace or a Van Gogh, they can become the hottest new designer… and wear a creation of their very own. Picture This is an awesome new mom-run business that will print your kid’s drawing directly onto a dress, whether for themselves, or in miniature for a favorite doll. Just download and print the dress template, let your child go crazy decorating it, email them a pic, and order a dress made from your very own kid’s artwork. Right now they offer a simple A-line t-shirt dress in sizes 2 to 18 that should look good on pretty much any...

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5 creative ways to make personalized candy favors and gifts the coolest ever. Look what we made!

My kids believe they are the World’s Greatest Fans of Dylan’s Candy Bar. Which is hilarious, considering that every single one of the zillions of kids who visit their shops each year also believe that they are the World’s Greatest Fans of Dylan’s Candy Bar. So when they joined on as our newest sponsor (yay!), and asked us to take a look at their new selection of personalized candy favors and gifts at the Dylan’s Candy Bar online Design Shoppe (double yay!), you have no idea how quickly I raised my hand. (Sorry, CMP comrades — early bird gets the chocolate.)   -Special Offer:...

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17 fun pencil cases for writers, book lovers and word nerds. Like us!

We love pencil cases! They’re where we put all our pencils! And pens, and earbuds, and erasers, and… pretty much anything that’ll fit. As our kids head back to school, we’re getting serious about corralling clutter, and if we can do it with flair, even better. So we’ve put together a ton of cool pencil cases especially geared toward lovers of books and writing. Or, as we like to call ourselves, word nerds. And we’re so pleased that this post is brought to you by our newest sponsor Pentel because, hello? What writer doesn’t adore premium quality pens that help you express your own writing style and creativity....

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What makes back-to-school gifts more special? We’re gonna go with llamas.

If you’ve done any back-to-school shopping lately, you may have noticed, like we have, that llamas are taking over the world. Quietly. And with deceptive cuteness because let me tell you, llamas mean business. The takeover may be inevitable at this point, so I’ve rounded up some of the most adorable llama-themed back-to-school items from around the web that I’ve found. Isn’t it nice when trends are stuff we can say we liked “before they were cool?” Yeah, foxes are kind of 2015. Don’t even get us started on owls. Related: Cool, colorful school supplies to make September more fun | Back to School Guide...

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Cleary Bikes: Like having a mountain, road, and BMX bike, all in one

With four kids who can ride their bikes to school on pavement and sidewalks, but also love to do a little off-roading as well, it’s been a little challenging trying to figure out what kind of bike to get them. Until I discovered Cleary Bikes, which are the perfect mix of mountain, road, and BMX. When the Cleary bike box arrived at our house to test out, I was pleased to discover that they come 99% assembled, which meant it didn’t take long until my kids were riding it around our neighborhood. And then fighting over who got to ride it around...

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Cool, colorful school supplies to make September a little more fun | Back to School Guide 2016

So once you’ve gotten the hand sanitizer, the tissue boxes, and everything else on that classroom shopping list, it’s time to have a little fun with some colorful school supplies! We always recommend getting a little goodie or two for the kids that gets them more excited about going back to school, whether it’s a cute backpack charm, a personalized notebook, a pencil case with their favorite character, or even a set of #2 pencils that are just that much cooler than your standard issue yellow pencils. With that, we had the best time putting together a rainbow of cool school...

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